Glenn Irwin: Ducati ride ‘is stuff of dreams’

Be Wiser Ducati riders Glenn Irwin (left) and Shane Byrne.

Be Wiser Ducati riders Glenn Irwin (left) and Shane Byrne.

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British Superbike rookie Glenn Irwin has described his first tests on the PBM Be Wiser Ducati as ‘the stuff of dreams’.

Irwin, who was drafted into Paul Bird’s team alongside four-time BSB champion Shane ‘Shakey’ Byrne for 2016, rode the Panigale R for the first time during a brace of two-day tests at Portimao in Portugal and the new Circuit Andalucia in Spain as he gained some valuable track time prior to his race debut in the opening championship round at Silverstone (April 8-10).

“Getting to ride a factory-backed Ducati is the stuff of dreams and it certainly didn’t disappoint me,” said the 25-year-old Carrick rider.

“It was everything I thought it would be and a little bit more so me and the team spent the early stages of the test dialling me into the bike. Everything about the Ducati is great: the power delivery, the chassis and the brakes, and we have only just started testing.

“The plan was for me to work on my own and then do a few laps with Shakey, which I found helped with adapting my riding style. He makes it look so easy and I was using him as a sponge,” added Irwin, who is among the guests at Friday night’s Cornmarket Motorbike Awards in Belfast.

“I think I did around 200 laps so we certainly got some good mileage in and with some more parts and development work before the next test, I can’t wait.

“I have a brilliant team around me with loads of experience too, so all in all, it’s been a very positive test.”